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Dr. Josef Mengele

During the Holocaust Josef Mengele was the chief provider for the gas chambers at Auschwitz - and did well! When it was reported that one block was infected with lice, Mengele solved the problem by gassing all the 750 women assigned to it.

The memory of this slightly built man, scarcely a hair out of place, his dark green tunic neatly pressed, his face well scrubbed, his Death's Head SS cap tilted rakishly to one side, remains vivid for those who survived his scrutiny when they arrived at the Auschwitz railhead. Polished boots slightly apart, his thumb resting on his pistol belt, he surveyed his prey with those dead gimlet eyes. Death to the left, life to the right.

Four hundred thousand souls - babies, small children, young girls, mothers, fathers, and grandparents - were casually waved to the left hand side with a flick of the cane clasped in a gloved hand.

Mengele did a number of medical experiments of unspeakable horror at Auschwitz, using twins. These twins as young as five years of age were usually murdered after the experiment was over and their bodies dissected.

Mengele injected chemicals into the eyes of children in an attempt to change their eye color. Unfortunately a strict veil of secrecy over the experiments enabled Mengele to do his work more effectively.

Despite international efforts to track him down, Josef Mengele was never apprehended and lived for 35 years hiding under various aliases. He lived in Paraguay and Brazil until his death in 1979.

One afternoon, living in Brazil, he went for a swim. While in the ocean he suffered a massive stroke and began to drown. By the time he was dragged to shore, he was dead.


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